2022 Chicago National Conference

July 21-23, 2022

Grade Level



Session Type


FILTERS APPLIED:9 - 12, Hands-On Workshop, Using Inquiry-Based STEM to Facilitate Learning for ALL, Environmental Science


Rooms and times subject to change.
3 results
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Chickenology: Food Delivery Challenge

Thursday, July 21 • 1:00 PM - 2:00 PM

McCormick Place - W179b

(Only registered attendees may view session materials. Please login with your NSTA account to view.)
Chickenology Food Delivery Challenge Lesson
Chickenology Food Delivery Challenge Slide Deck
Chickenology Student Rubric

STRAND: Using Inquiry-Based STEM to Facilitate Learning for ALL

Show Details

Participants will use sensemaking and the engineering design process to solve a real world food production problem in a small scale format. This lesson introduces the Food Delivery Challenge, in which participants must design a gravity feeder to carry food (chicken feed) to twelve hungry chickens for over 24 hours. To accomplish the task students must design and build a model of an efficient gravity feeder using the materials available to them. The scenario presented to the class: One of the feeders in your uncle’s barn has broken down, and a new one will not arrive until next month. You must create a gravity feeder to satisfy 12 chickens for 24 hours consistently to ensure the health of your flock. Participants will research, design, build and test their design before presenting to the group for feedback, Participants will then use the feedback to redesign for an improved feeder.

1. Use the engineering design process to collaborate, design and build a gravitational feeder system that will feed 10 pounds of feed over a 24 hour period. 2. Present your design plan, and final product to the class for feedback. 3. Provide feedback to the design team for design improvement.

Leah LaCrosse (McCormick Junior High School: Huron, OH), Heather Bryan (Nourish the Future - Education Projects, LLC: Columbus, OH)

Nourish the Future: Energy and Biofuels

Saturday, July 23 • 9:20 AM - 10:20 AM

McCormick Place - W196a

(Only registered attendees may view session materials. Please login with your NSTA account to view.)
Nourish the Future Energy Biofuels slide deck
Nourish the Future Fermentation Factories Student Lesson
Nourish the Future Fermentation Factories Teacher Document

STRAND: Using Inquiry-Based STEM to Facilitate Learning for ALL

Show Details

Students utilize different components (enzymes, yeast, feed stocks, and water) to produce ethanol and carbon dioxide through the process of fermentation. Students will develop a model of fermentation and explain how ethanol is made to answer the focus question "How can fermentation produce a renewable fuel source?" Students will develop experimental models to generate data in order to construct explanations about the relationships between the components of the fermentation process and to predict how those relationships can be manipulated to produce carbon dioxide. Students will design solutions to make the fermentation process as efficient as possible and generate the maximum amount of ethanol in a small bag environment Attendees will participate in hands-on activities centered around biofuel. Participants are going to prepare and compare different amounts of fermentation occurring in four different mixtures which will allow observations of production rates. A second activity focuses on a way to make a qualitative or quantitative explanation regarding the relationship between feed stock and glucose availability for ethanol production. Participants will deconstruct a model of starch to examine enzyme and starch reactions to determine how starches change into smaller molecules. Three additional hands-on activities that can be included in your classroom curriculum will be discussed.

Nourish the Future is a national education initiative developed by science teachers for science teachers to connect students to modern agriculture and provide sound science based resources that meet teacher and student needs in the classroom.

Tiska Rodgers (Clarkton High School: Clarkton, MO), Leanne Thele (Perryville High School: No City, No State)

Energize Your Climate Change Course for High School

Saturday, July 23 • 2:20 PM - 3:20 PM

McCormick Place - W175c

STRAND: Using Inquiry-Based STEM to Facilitate Learning for ALL

Show Details

How and why has Earth’s climate changed over time? How do we collect data about Earth’s natural history? How do Earth’s orbital variations affect climate? What role does phytoplankton play in the Carbon Cycle? These are all questions that are answered by exploring a series of hands-on activities that are NGSS aligned. Activities include: eccentricity, obliquity, precession, carbon and plants, the effect of carbon dioxide on temperature, ocean acidification, and more. The climate change curriculum, from the eesmarts K-12 curriculum, an energy efficiency and clean, renewable energy learning initiative funded by the Connecticut Energy Efficiency Fund, is made up of adapted lessons surrounding natural cycles that occur on Earth and how humans may affect natural cycles. Activities examine evidence from the past through proxies such as forams and ice core data. Additional topics include sea-level rise and vulnerability, the impact of single use plastics, and how the effect of human activity can be minimized. The lessons are written in the 5-E Instructional Model (Engage - Explore - Explain - Elaborate - Evaluate) and include teacher-presentation Google Slides and student handouts. Select digital resources will be provided to participants. The complete eesmarts program is free and available to all Connecticut educators.

Participants will explore activities that demonstrate how and why Earth’s climate has changed over time.

Karin Jakubowski (eesmarts: No City, No State), Kathleen Brooks (eesmarts)

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